Everyone has published a Holiday Gift Idea List, but what about an Annual Gift Idea List? Why create a list just for the holidays, when there is a build-up of last minute stress and no money? My husband and I created a Christmas account, but even that doesn’t help us in the very end. An Annual Gift Idea List combines birthdays and holidays and gives you the opportunity to shop all year long.

Annual Green Gift Ideas

  1. Homemade Treats – bake something as a gift, which is usually fairly standard for some people. However, my specialty is my Ginger Cookies, which my grandfather loves every year, along with a photo of the family. No use spending money on pricey, itchy sweaters that he will never wear. I will spend money on the ingredients for the cookies, knowing he will enjoy them! I wouldn’t recommend baking and storing, unless you know how to. However, when you see certain ingredients on sale, stock up!
  2. Handmade Gifts – I love the meaning behind handmade gifts. I recently purchased beautiful handmade scarves from a friend. This not only supported her business, but something handmade just offers a sense of genuine thoughfulness, which means more to someone than anything generic and store bought.
  3. Regift Multiply Items – Regifting is also an idea to save some green. When I was studying journalism in college, I think I received a journal for every birthday, Christmas and random holiday from my parents or family members. I never actually got into journaling on paper, so these were ideal for regifting for several friends. I also have a ton of frames and when I give someone a photo, I like to include a frame. So I just pick one out of the closet and viola! Other multiply gifts include: bottles of lotion and hand soap, candles, and maybe even jewelry. Just try to remember not to regift to the same person who gave it to you! That would be a big OOPS!
  4. Local Jams, Jellies, Pecans & Wines – Why buy your family or friends the same thing that they can buy at their own grocery store? If you have a local mart or local vineyard, try the gift of local foods. I think it’s really nice to receive a gift that is native to the area. In Little River, SC, we have a very popular local vineyard, called La Belle Amie, that makes several different wines, some made from muscadine grapes grown on site.  For a national list of local vineyards to find one in your area, visit the All American Wineries website.
  5. Personal Coupon Book – Sounds cheesy and for dating couples, but give it a chance. Create a personal coupon book for your parents, your spouse, your friends and even your kids. Here are some ideas for them: Parents – Cook Dinner, Household Chores / Spouse – Foot Massage, Spa Day, Cook Dinner, Household Chores / Friends – Babysitting, Cook Dinner, Wash Cars / Kids – Messy Room Pass, No Bath Night, Sleepover Party, Camping Party

Post a comment below with your ideas!

the author

Originally from Virginia, Jennifer C. Sellers is passionate about sustainability and conservation in South Carolina and throughout the world. She earned her BA in English from Coastal Carolina University and her MAS in Environmental Policy and Management from the University of Denver. She is a university sustainability coordinator that implements programs and teaches people about going green and being sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @MyGreenGlasses

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